Open PhD position: “3D printing of hyaluronic acid aerogels as on-demand removable wound dressings”

    PHD THESIS CEMEF 2020: 3D printing of hyaluronic acid aerogels as on-demand removable wound dressings.


    Wound management is nowadays a major health issue. Wound-related health problems will be accentuated in the years to come because of the aging of the population whereby the prevalence of wounds, in particular chronic wounds, will increase. Wound dressings are the most important tool for wound management; they can have various forms ranging from foams to hydrocolloids and hydrogels. Very recently, it has been demonstrated that certain polysaccharide solutions can be used to ‘print’ hydrogels in complex forms, which is particularly useful for wound dressings that often require unique shapes.

    Global objective of work

    The objective of the 3D-AER-HYAL project is the preparation of on-demand removable, hyaluronic acid-based aerogels obtained by additive manufacturing for application as wound dressings which are capable of releasing biologically active agents.

    Detailed presentation

    Bio-aerogels are highly porous, nanostructured materials with a large internal surface area; they are obtained via non-toxic processes from solutions and hydrogels of polysaccharides. The project is at the interface of materials science (biobased polymers, aerogels, 3D printing), chemistry (polymer crosslinking) and biomedical applications (wound dressings, controlled release). Hyaluronic acid will be printed into hydrogels using a support bath, which avoids the disadvantages of conventional printing-in-air, including clogging of the printing nozzle and gravity-induced structural collapse during printing. Relevant drugs (e.g. antibiotics) will be incorporated in the aerogels physically via mixing and impregnation. The potential of the bio-aerogels as drug-releasing wound dressings will be evaluated using in vitro and ex vivo models.

    References :
    - S. Buwalda, T. Vermonden, W. Hennink, Hydrogels for therapeutic delivery: current developments and future directions, Biomacromolecules 2017, 18, 316 - 330.
    - L. Ouyang, C. Highley, C. Rodell, W. Sun, J. Burdick, 3D Printing of shear-thinning hyaluronic acid hydrogels with secondary cross-linking, Biomaterials Science and Engineering 2016, 2, 1743 - 1751.

    Candidate profile and skills

    Knowledge in materials science, polymer chemistry and polymer physics; fluent in English, highly motivated, pro-active; MSc thesis completed

    Gross annual salary

    about 26k€

    Apply to this PhD offer

    General informations

    • Industrial field: Mechanics and Materials
    • Location: MINES ParisTech - CEMEF, Sophia-Antipolis (06), France and Montpellier (34), France
    • Keywords: Polymers, gels, physico-chemical properties, mechanical and processing properties, encapsulation and release, 3D printing, biomaterials, wound dressings.
    • Duration: 3 years
    • Project type/ cooperation: Project financed by ANR. Collaboration between CEMEF (Sophia Antipolis) and IBMM (Montpellier).


    • Teams: Group ‘Biobased Polymers and Composites’ (CEMEF) and Polymers for Health and Biomaterials (IBMM, Prof. Dr. Benjamin Nottelet)
    • Supervisors: Dr. Tatiana Budtova (PhD supervisor, CEMEF) and Dr. Sytze Buwalda (PhD co-supervisor, CEMEF)

    To apply

    • papers requiered to apply:
    • your most recent CV
    • Detailed, official proof of your grades during your most recent studies(maximum 3)
    • One or more references from professors or heads of training programmes

    Information! Application only on the CEMEF website.
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